Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Mad Rant: Calling the British Royals Nazis
Another complication was the presence of the Queen’s uncle King Edward VIII (at the time the Prince of Wales and later the Duke of Windsor after his abdication). He seems to be the one showing the little group how to do the salute properly. His presence, of course, makes the issue all the stickier because we all know how King Edward VIII, fairly or not, has been labeled for some time as the primary Nazi sympathizer in the British Royal Family. Personally, I think that is going too far. However, there is no doubt that his views would put him on the ‘naughty list’ for acceptable society today. He opposed the League of Nations, had no problem with Mussolini invading Ethiopia and thought it would be a terrible idea for the British Empire to fight another world war with Germany. It is probably also fair to say that he viewed the Nazi regime as an improvement over the Weimar Republic as far as Germany was concerned. But this also points back to a greater problem that is inevitable when one picks out an 82-year old video and looks at in with the popular perception of today rather than in the context of 1933.
The really infuriating thing though is that none of this should be taken seriously in the first place. Anyone who has seen the video can clearly see that the group is just playing around, acting silly. Trying to make an issue out of this old home movie is not just ridiculous, it is slanderous. Look beyond the horsing around to what really matters. What really matters are the facts and the fact is that the Queen Mother was denouncing the Nazis before denouncing the Nazis was cool. Hitler called her “the most dangerous woman in Europe”. No love lost there. The Queen and Prince Philip both served in World War II, Prince Philip at the front in the Royal Navy and the Queen at home with what we would call the supply and logistics side of military operations. To try to cast them as being among the ranks of the enemy is treasonous slander of the first order. As for opening the archives; what would that accomplish? I doubt there is anything there that most royal historians do not already know. There were German relatives who held positions in Nazi Germany, we already know that. There were times when the British royals met and talked with such relatives, we know that. Many in Britain had great reservations about going into another world war with Germany and we know that too. It was the conflict that cost Britain her empire and it is no wonder that not everyone would view it as joyous event, regardless of how much they might despise any of the Axis countries.